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Rochester, MN  55904

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Rochester’s First Communications & Engagement Manager Named

Post Date:06/29/2018

Jenna Bowman has been named to the newly created role of Communications & Engagement Manager for the City of Rochester. Ms. Bowman, a Rochester native, currently leads the Rochester Downtown Alliance as its executive director, a role she will be stepping away from later in July in order to join the city.

“I am excited and honored to serve the community as Communications and Engagement Manager,” Ms. Bowman stated upon her appointment. “This role will allow greater capacity and consistency, which has been identified as a key priority for the City of Rochester. I look forward to both maintaining and building relationships with citizens, organizations, and internal city team members.”

The Communications and Engagement Manager position was approved as part of the 2018 budget process, and is intended to serve as a primary administrator and consultant for the City's community engagement, public information, and internal communications. The position reports to and will work closely with the City’s Communications Director, Anissa Hollingshead, as well as City Administration in advancing key city objectives. A key goal for the role is to build proactive, clear, and consistent two-way communication between City government and residents, businesses, organizations, and other stakeholders.

Ms. Bowman’s hiring follows a nation-wide search begun in February. Ms. Hollingshead, who joined the City of Rochester in February of 2017 in the dual role of City Clerk and Communications Director, noted the strength of the applicant pool. “It is tremendously exciting to get the opportunity to meet with some truly talented individuals with a vision for this work, and even more exciting to have Jenna as a local talent rise to the top.” Ms. Hollingshead also highlighted the significance of bringing on a dedicated team member focused solely on communications and engagement, “More so at the local level than other levels of government, it is critical for residents to have the opportunity to be part of the work of their government. The city must be intentional in building its capacity to connect with its residents and stakeholders across this work, and dedicating this resource demonstrates the commitment of the City Council and City Administration to do so.”

Ms. Bowman has served as the Executive Director of the Rochester Downtown Alliance since 2014, in that time championing and providing leadership on several different project and initiatives including the brand refresh, creation of two new events, the introduction of passive programming, and a focus on data collection and reporting. “The RDA Board of Directors would like to thank Ms. Bowman for the dedication, service, and inspiring leadership she has provided over the past four years,” said RDA Board of Directors Chair Al Mannino. “She will continue to be an asset to downtown - and to the entire community - in her new role with the City of Rochester.” Jenna Bowman’s first day with the City of Rochester will be Thursday, July 26.